Share the Harvest

The Eat Fresh SE Iowa Coalition is devoted to promoting better access to fresh, nutritious local foods to everyone in our community.  Food pantries play a critical role in Iowa’s food system. One in eight people in Iowa struggle with hunger and utilize the services that food pantries provide. 

Community gardens, school gardens, and home gardens can provide safe and delicious fresh food to food pantries. Gardeners can support their community’s use of local food by donating some of their harvest to area food pantries or by helping our at an area community garden.

Anyone can contribute their excess garden produce to food pantries.  Donations help to prevents food waste while providing fresh, nutritious food to families experiencing food insecurity.   

We have created a guide to help you find a food pantry or community garden close to you as well as tips on how to donate.

Volunteer Now!

Iowa State University Extension and Outreach wants to promote volunteerism in Des Moines County through the Volunteer NOW! Program. Volunteers can find local non-profits in need of volunteer’s and organizations can sign up to be included on the list of area non-profits. Click here for more information.

Join our COalition

If you would like to get involved in our local food coalition, contact Morgan Hoenig, Local Foods Coordinator with Des Moines County Extension & Outreach.

To learn more about our coalition click here.

Iowa Master Gardeners

Master Gardeners come from a variety of backgrounds. They are passionate about serving their communities and sharing gardening best practices. Master Gardeners are individuals who have taken the Master Gardener training and share their time and expertise as volunteers in community gardens, city beautification projects, and farmers markets to name a few. It is the acquisition of knowledge, the skill in gardening, and giving back to the community that distinguishes a Master Gardener from other gardeners.

There are very active chapters in Des Moines and Henry Counties, but we have individual Master Gardeners in all of the counties in southeast Iowa.  The focus of most of the projects in our region have been on gardener education, beautifying the community, and donating garden produce to those who are in need.  

For more information about Iowa Master Gardeners and how you can join, visit the Iowa Master Gardener website.